Jump to content

Photo

Baldur's Gate 2 No-Reload Challenge


  • Please log in to reply
15228 replies to this topic

#1926
Alesia_BH

Alesia_BH
  • Members
  • 4,578 posts
Congratulations on a outstanding run Enuhal. I'm sorry to hear that the fight with Mel didn't work out- and I do know how it feels to fall in the final battle. Nonetheless, you did an excellent job of demonstrating what Totemic Druids are capable of and you seemed to enjoy yourself in the process. That's why I offer congratulations rather than condolences. Hats off!

Back on the old forums, there was a player who was committed to soloing the vanilla game with every possible class/kit. He nearly did it. There was only one kit that he couldn't beat Mel with: the Totemic Druid. He was convinced it was nigh impossible. It sounds like Arinja put up a valiant fight on her first try. And ultimately, she succeeded in demonstrating that the Totemic Druid can indeed beat Mel. So again: hats off.

Grond0 wrote...
Are apr relevant with a sling - from your description of the tight quarters it doesn't sound as though you would get enough room for more than 1 attack anyway before you need to move? I think this type of strategy has been used by Alesia in quite a few battles. Does Amelyssan regenerate to stop herself dying from sling attacks over time?


I can confirm that that works in the original Ascension Battles though there are a lot of ways to exit stage left in the process. Based on my experience, I'd wager it would work in the SCS version with infinite patience and attention to detail.

I can't comment on Vanilla Mel since it's been such a long time since I've fought her. But based on the reports of others, it seems it would very difficult to execute if possible at all. Despite Ascension's reputation for difficulty, I suspect that vanilla Mel may actually be more challenging for solo Druids since they always have the Sling to fall back on if all else fails in Ascension.

In any event, best of luck in you next run Enuhal!


Cheers,

A.

Edited by Alesia_BH, 17 July 2011 - 01:52 PM.


#1927
Alesia_BH

Alesia_BH
  • Members
  • 4,578 posts

My (first) Sorcerer died, trying to Solo the Planar Sphere early. After beating the Halflings, Lavok, and Tolgerias, he couldn't stand against the Tanari when he was down at level 12. Spell Immunity didn't seem to protect against the Demon's Hold attack, which resulted in a painful death. I actually retried this fight a few times just to see how one -would- beat it, and was pretty stumped.


I'm sorry to here that ExFalso.

Here's a shot of my Transmuting Sorceress doing it. You can read most of the buffs off the portrait. When I ran the original Transmuting Alastria through that battle, she used a Potion of Magic Shielding. I remember thinking that was a waste of resources and believe Sorceress Alastria went with a Potion of Freedom.

http://i1195.photobu...arSphere060.jpg

Alastria's level was noticeably higher than 12 though: I usually make a point of putting that quest off in solo No Reload games. That may be worth considering in future runs.


Best,

A.

Edited by Alesia_BH, 17 July 2011 - 01:51 PM.


#1928
Enuhal

Enuhal
  • Members
  • 363 posts
Thank you for the kind words. Although I have never played Ascension, from what I've seen and heard, you are propably right about it actually being easier for a solo druid.

Potions of freedom are actually not that rare, iirc. I think they are not only sold by Ribald and Gorch (in Mae'Vars Guild), but also by both the Temples of Ilmater in Athkatla (Waukeens and Slums). Very useful indeed for any non-divine spellcaster.

By the way, I just started a BG1 game with SCS, HardTimes and ItemRandomiser (only the second time I try to play with these mods - the last time, I propably messed up the installation and after one unsuccessful no-reload run, my game didn't start anymore). Progress will soon be posted in the BG1 thread.

#1929
corey_russell

corey_russell
  • Members
  • 5,300 posts
Coltan the halfling thief - FINAL update

Coltan helped Trademeet so we would have enough cash to get the Shield of Balduran and pay off the shadow thieves, I wanted to do the Unseeing Eye quest early.

Against the shadow druids we played it safe - disabling spells plus cloudkill.

We had Jaheira challenge Faldorn. she cast an insect plague, fire elemental and a nymph. Then she switched to bear form and started whaling on Faldorn. The nymph held Faldorn, which naturally spelled Faldorn's doom.

Once we got paid for our efforts, we headed to Athkatla to get the SoB and pay off Gaelen per our plan. We then headed to the Unseeing Eye area. We searched for the rod and the battles were going very well. Anomen's turn undead was naturally helpful.

As for the beholder's lair, Minsc soloed everything here, except the casters in middile. Just like teh shadow druids we had Coltan scout ahead, then back off and fire off disabling spells and cloudkills. This won it quite safely.

Finally for the Unseeing Eye himself. We got the rod and equipped it on Minsc, and headed out but I did something very foolish. I forgot to hide in shadows before moving! And of course Murphy's law was in effect. Despite being in the back row and Minsc being much closer, the Unseeing Eye targeted Coltan with something (don't even know what) and insta-killed him.

Back to BG 1. I will have fellow Bhaalspawn with me this next run (so that I can use some custom pictures).

Edited by corey_russell, 17 July 2011 - 09:05 PM.


#1930
touch_of_the_void

touch_of_the_void
  • Members
  • 137 posts

corey_russell wrote...

Finally for the Unseeing Eye himself. We got the rod and equipped it on Minsc, and headed out but I did something very foolish. I forgot to hide in shadows before moving! And of course Murphy's law was in effect. Despite being in the back row and Minsc being much closer, the Unseeing Eye targeted Coltan with something (don't even know what) and insta-killed him.


I'd guess Power Word: Kill. How much HP did he have at the time?

#1931
corey_russell

corey_russell
  • Members
  • 5,300 posts
About 53 - but it can't be that or Aerie would be dead too. Or is that a single-target spell?

#1932
kenng

kenng
  • Members
  • 73 posts

corey_russell wrote...

About 53 - but it can't be that or Aerie would be dead too. Or is that a single-target spell?


Single target, and the eye is famous for spamming power-word spells. I guess you were just unlucky; I doubt stealth woulld have helped anyways.

#1933
touch_of_the_void

touch_of_the_void
  • Members
  • 137 posts

kenng wrote...

corey_russell wrote...

About 53 - but it can't be that or Aerie would be dead too. Or is that a single-target spell?


Single target, and the eye is famous for spamming power-word spells. I guess you were just unlucky; I doubt stealth woulld have helped anyways.


Pre-buffing low-HP characters with Death Ward is the safe option.

#1934
BelgarathMTH

BelgarathMTH
  • Members
  • 1,008 posts
EDIT: Oops, I read through here too fast last night.

Condolences on your lost character, Corey. I hate the Unseeing Eye!

Edited by BelgarathMTH, 18 July 2011 - 06:38 PM.


#1935
Triaxx2

Triaxx2
  • Members
  • 30 posts
Stealth doesn't help, the Eye can see through it. At least vanilla. Invisibility doesn't seem any better.

#1936
corey_russell

corey_russell
  • Members
  • 5,300 posts
I have the cloak of non-detection, don't know if that works against the eye though. Uh Belgarath, Coltan is dead - I'm going back to BG 1 re-rolling a new character.

#1937
polytope

polytope
  • Members
  • 342 posts

AnonymousHero wrote...

Another option might be GoI, though I'm not sure what level the demon's "effects" are considered -- I just noticed that GoI works against the confusion attack of the Umber Hulks.

Nabassu's paralyze ability is counted as an 8th level spell (but AoE, so can't be bounced by spell protections).

Their gaze is considered lvl zero so gets through everything, incidentally, this is also true of Succubus charm spells.

Enuhal wrote...

there is no such thing as kiting Amelyssan, because she doesn't need to be close to you to kill you.

I'll second this, original Melissan throws darts if she can't reach you, and druids can't equip the reflection shield either... To beat her reliably I think you need a character (or party) with lots of apr, or a way of dealing magic damage (holy smite or wilting).

Anyway, making it to the ToB endgame with a solo druid is an accomplishment.

#1938
polytope

polytope
  • Members
  • 342 posts

corey_russell wrote...

I have the cloak of non-detection, don't know if that works against the eye though.

The cloak prevents enemies from revealing you with True Sight etc. if you're stealthed, but it doesn't make any difference if the creature can actually see through invisibility.

#1939
AnonymousHero

AnonymousHero
  • Members
  • 471 posts

polytope wrote...
Nabassu's paralyze ability is counted as an 8th level spell (but AoE, so can't be bounced by spell protections).

Their gaze is considered lvl zero so gets through everything, incidentally, this is also true of Succubus charm spells.

I take it you're talking about vanilla fiends?

Btw, how do you find this information? Near Infinity?

polytope wrote...
Anyway, making it to the ToB endgame with a solo druid is an accomplishment.

Seconded.

#1940
amanasleep

amanasleep
  • Members
  • 161 posts

Enuhal wrote...

Unless someone comes up with a genius plan completely unknown to me, thus proving me wrong, I'll stand by my judgement that killing Amelyssan with a solo totemic druid in a no-reload game is only possible with an absurd amount of luck or by using some exploits. I've already discovered this with my previous totemic druid - there were exactly two ways she eventually managed to defeat Amelyssan - first, constant reloading until she hit the priestress with "Harm" - second, abusing the "putting a ring bag into the bag recharges him"-bug and killing Amelyssan with the Ring of the Ram (which is prettty much the only really relieable way to deal damage to her).

Oh, I tried. I fought Amelyssan for about half an hour straight. Started with deva because she and her summons can use fear. Got my spellcasting disrupted a lot, not being able to get through her stoneskins. Ironskin was gone, my simmy too, too many summons on the field to successfully recast ironskins. Getting surrounded, but, with some ror-charges, getting out by killing some of the summons.

I eventually tried some things I haven't tested on my previous run, like using firestorm - didn't do any damage. Amelyssan got stuck (blocked by her summons) for a short time, allowing me to recast my buffs and summons. Trying to deal damage to her in melee combat, but to no avail. She also dispelled my energy blades.

Death Tyrant dispelled all of my buffs, I thought I was dead here, but Arinja stood up and got away. Using lots and lots of potions, her Oils of Speed were already all gone (they kept getting dispelled all the time). Arinja managed to claw her way out of another surround, got held, but still survived because the death tyrant dispelled the hold spell immediatly.

I had no options left, the only thing I could do all battle was stay alive as long as possible until all potions were gone. I admitted defeat.

Arinja was still alive, though, so I decided (though the no-reload challenge was over) to try the recharging ring of the ram-thing, which worked as usual. Arinja took out the air elementals with her sling. After bringing Amelyssan to injured with the ring-trick in the second battle, the druid finally was killed.

I guess if I had gone with the ring of the ram-thing right away, I might have won the battle, but I don't use obvious exploits in a no-reload game, so it wasn't an option. For harm spells, I pretty much only learned those when it came to level 6 spells and tried all of them - manged to hit with none of them. Amelyssan seems to have an answer to all the totemic druids powers.

Still, I am quite happy with how the run went (it was obvious that I wouldn't be able to defeat Amelyssan, and I am proud of killing Draconis, Abazigal and the Ravager). Guess I might install BGT and SCSI+II and return to the first game again :) Good luck to all of you!


First and foremost: Awesome run.  I appreciate your thorough descriptions and documentation.  I've never tried this myself on vanilla Mel, but I've wondered if it was possible to strip her stoneskins with Globe of Blades?  There is also the slightest chance she might fail a save, since I think the Globe bypasses MR.  Of course, the Globe won't last very long, but maybe if you, Chan, and a Deva all ganged up...

#1941
amanasleep

amanasleep
  • Members
  • 161 posts

polytope wrote...

Enuhal wrote...

there is no such thing as kiting Amelyssan, because she doesn't need to be close to you to kill you.

I'll second this, original Melissan throws darts if she can't reach you, and druids can't equip the reflection shield either... To beat her reliably I think you need a character (or party) with lots of apr, or a way of dealing magic damage (holy smite or wilting).

Anyway, making it to the ToB endgame with a solo druid is an accomplishment.


Druids can cast Physical Mirror, but can't keep it up I guess.  Does regular magic damage work on Mel?  I thought she was magic resistant.  If not then won't she fall to Harm?

#1942
polytope

polytope
  • Members
  • 342 posts

AnonymousHero wrote...

I take it you're talking about vanilla fiends?

Btw, how do you find this information? Near Infinity?

Yes, vanilla fiends. aTweaks latest version does assign "schools' to certain spell like abilities, which are counterparts of actual wizard/priest spells, but not all fiend abilities.

[OT]You can use NI to look this up, to find the file you want first look at SPELL.IDS, it lists each spell with a 4 digit identification number; if it starts with 1, it's a priest spell, if it starts with 2, it's a wizard spell, if it starts with 3, it's an innate spell. I.e. TANARI_PARALYZE is #3999 or spin999.spl.[/OT]

amanasleep wrote...

Druids can cast Physical Mirror, but can't keep it up I guess.  Does regular magic damage work on Mel?  I thought she was magic resistant.  If not then won't she fall to Harm?

Original Melissan is 90% magic resistant and immune to elelmental damage, but has no resistance to poison or magic damage.

Harm works, but the odds are badly against you - you'd need to cast Magic Resistance on her first to have a chance of it getting through, then you've still got a 40% chance of failing - worse in fact with druid THAC0. Both of those spells have a long casting time and are likely to be interrupted by Mel or one of her summons... And you'd need to pull it off four times, I understand why Enuhal said it couldn't be done by a solo totemist without reloads.

Edited by polytope, 18 July 2011 - 06:50 AM.


#1943
Enuhal

Enuhal
  • Members
  • 363 posts
Harm theoretically works, and Magic Resistance does too, and that's the way my first solo totemic druid killed Amelyssan. However, to even inflict the FIRST harm sucessfully on Mel, she had to try the battle about 20 times - and that's while I was testing if Harm was even possible to use and instantly killed all the summons with ctr+y. You need ridiculously good luck to pull that off (and Arinja didn't have that).

First and foremost: Awesome run. I appreciate your thorough descriptions and documentation. I've never tried this myself on vanilla Mel, but I've wondered if it was possible to strip her stoneskins with Globe of Blades? There is also the slightest chance she might fail a save, since I think the Globe bypasses MR. Of course, the Globe won't last very long, but maybe if you, Chan, and a Deva all ganged up...


Thank you :)
The problems here are (even though I didn't try this specifically) - you, sadly, can't chose which elemental prince to summon. Also, the Deva will, unless very lucky, most likely be disrupted by something when trying to cast globe of blades (there are constant earthquakes and lots of very fast summons running around). And for the druid, if you stand near Mel for too long, you'll get surrounded and lose your ironskins pretty quickly (and that's one of the main problems - as soon as you lose your ironskins for the first time, it's EXTREMELY difficult to recast them or any spell with a long casting time for that matter). I am pretty sure Globe of Blades would also be dispelled by Death Tyrants and Mel herself pretty quickly.

Also, keep in mind: Globe of Blades, Summon Deva and Summon Elemental Prince are all level 7 spells. You'd need three of them for each try, and that's assuming you always get Chan. However, you only have 8 in total - you'd need 12.

Edited by Enuhal, 18 July 2011 - 08:46 AM.


#1944
touch_of_the_void

touch_of_the_void
  • Members
  • 137 posts
Did you try Dispel Magic for removing Mel's Stoneskins?

#1945
Enuhal

Enuhal
  • Members
  • 363 posts
I did, at one time. I'm not even completely sure it didn't work, but I still was unable to seriously hurt her (in the whole ~20 min of the battle, there was only one regular physical hit that dealt damage to her). At least I didn't see her recast any stoneskins, so I am pretty sure it failed.

Might be worth a shot, I don't know. At least you have ~12 dispel magic spells to try on her, which is more that you can say for most options (since you don't need any other level 3 spells for the battle). But I am pretty sure I tried it with my first totemic druid and didn't have any major success.

The thing is, whatever strategy you chose, you have to stick with it - there is only a very, very short opportunity to almost freely cast spells right at the beginning, so this is where you have to make your decision - do you try to dispell magic, do you go for simmy and energy blades, do you try summons, cast magic resistance and harm etc. (and you need a Deva for remove fear, but you could theoretically do that in pocket plane). After that, there is only the very rare lucky spell or those with very short casting time you'll be able to use - of course, summoning a spirit animals often gives you a few seconds.

That means, if you don't do a test run where you pretty much try everything a lot of times until you find something that works regularily (or find out that nothing does, as it seemed to be the case with the user trying to solo the game with every kit mentioned by Alesia), your chances of success are... very, very low in a no-reload game.
However, it would be nice to see some other players go ahead and try it :) If you don't hate summoning, totemic druids are fun and very playable in SoA, and in ToB the battles start to get really exciting.

#1946
Alesia_BH

Alesia_BH
  • Members
  • 4,578 posts

polytope wrote...

I'll second this, original Melissan throws darts if she can't reach you, and druids can't equip the reflection shield either...


Just a note on the Reflection Shield. When I did my Avenger Druid Ascension solo, I found her inability to equip the Reflection Shield to be the most obvious plank in her power ceiling. It made the Core version of the Irenicus Battle very difficult for her and made the Hard/Insane versions of the Final Battle with Mel and the 5 nigh impossible.

Solo No Reloaders who are committed to finishing successfully should think carefully before building a character that can not equip the Reflection Shield. Victory is possible no doubt, but it may prove limiting in some ways.


Best,

A.

Edited by Alesia_BH, 18 July 2011 - 09:57 AM.


#1947
Alesia_BH

Alesia_BH
  • Members
  • 4,578 posts
Quick Note on Alana's Game:

Alana is still alive. However, she is running out of steam. I've been kind of put off by the difficulty she has had with the Sahaugin Royal Guards and the first Drow party. SCS boosted them enough to make solo hit-and-run slinging a test of patience(*). I'm not sure I'll pass- not with everything else going on in my life at the moment.

In essence, Alana is on hold now. I may return to her when I have more time to play.


Best of luck to all the actives.

A.

(*) To be clear, I think SCS did an excellent job of balancing these components. Fighting these foes just happens to be wearisome for my character.

Edited by Alesia_BH, 18 July 2011 - 10:13 AM.


#1948
Alesia_BH

Alesia_BH
  • Members
  • 4,578 posts

touch_of_the_void wrote...
Pre-buffing low-HP characters with Death Ward is the safe option.


Agreed. And if you are solo, Vampiric Touch can often get thieves over the 60 HP mark.

I generally try to pick up 1 VT in BG1.

Potions of Power can be helpful in these situations as well. And of course, Potions of Fortitude if you have a low Con.


Best,

A.

Edited by Alesia_BH, 18 July 2011 - 10:17 AM.


#1949
AnonymousHero

AnonymousHero
  • Members
  • 471 posts
Serena, the Lawful Neutral Monk:

Mods: Basically SCS/SCSII (no smarter mages/priests), various tweaks. No locks & traps, but I won't exploit that gratuitously to get ahead at the beginning by, say, getting the Horn of Valhalla before Serena is able to foil the now-gone Maze trap that would be fatal without 100% MR. See the whole list of tweaks here.

EDIT: Forgot to mention the most important mod: the G3 Oversight monk HLAs.

As all my characters these days, Serena began her career in Candlekeep in BG1.

Here are a few screen shots from her travels.

  • Hide in Shadows + Wand of the Heavens means that Gnarl (or is it Hairtooth?) dies before he gets to use his potion of giant strength.
  • Stunning Blow at work against Mulahey.
  • Dart Proficiency pays off against Tranzig.
  • Amnish Soldier gets lucky. This was actually a huge help since I'd forgotten that Nimbul was there and sort of stumbled onto him while my head was elsewhere.
  • Taking on Drasus and company. Buffed with lots of potions: Invulnerability, Hill Giant Strength (19) from Gnarl, Greenstone Amulet, Potion of Absorption (for +10 AC against Drasus). Was also using the Ring of Free Action (from Dushai). The melee fighters were ignored while the mages fell to bombardment with the Amulet of Missiles. Once they were gone, it was a foregone conclusion.
  • I don't really have any shots from the midgame, but here's Jalantha Mistmyr being stunned and beaten to death.
  • Slythe requires a lot of care because of his potions + backstabs, but Serena had prepared by chugging a Potion of Power (found only two during the entire game), a potion of Defense and a potion of giant strength (24), and a few Potions of Mind Focusing for added DEX (and thus a little better AC). Slythe fell in due course.
  • Not wanting to waste potions, Serena hurried to the Ducal Palace where she used Wand of Sleep + melee combat to fight off the doppelgangers.
  • In the thieves' maze, she used hit & run tactics against the Skeleton Warriors. (This was done purely to have more experience at the start of BG2.)
  • Tamoko failed her save against Darts of Stunning and died shortly thereafter.
  • For the final fight Serena buffed. Buffs: Purple Potion, Potion of Agility + Potion of Fortitude to negate the downsides, Potion of Power (last one), Potion of Mind Focusing (last one), multiple Potion of Perception to increase chances of successful Hide in Shadows use. The fight was pretty simple as she used her superior speed to do a little pillar-dancing, hiding in shadows at every opportunity and attacking from invisibility.

After killing Sarevok Serena did various quests for a little more EXP: Serena's character sheet at the time of going to Athkatla.

Irenicus' dungeon:

Cleared most of Irenicus' dungeon.

Stunning Blow proved effective against the mephits, though she couldn't take any chances with the mephits in the "air room", so she stealthed past them. The mephit portals were taken down by casting Horror at the first two mephits and by stealthing to the furthest portal and destroying it first (it spawns the dangerous Radiant Mephit).

The nameless Escaped Clone met her doom by way of a Stunning Blow. Serena again chose to stealth past the mephit in the corridor since it often spawns with a "stun" ability.

The gnomes guarding the Girdle of Bluntness were assassinated and the doppelganger was killed while Serena was retrieving the Potion of Firebreath (crucial against the Suna Seni ambush mage). Serena stealthed past the final group of shadow thieves (didn't want to risk backstabs) and left the dungeon.

She went straight to the Circus and cleared that without ceremony. She postponed the final reward (+1 reputation) for later.

Immediate game priorities were to: Get the Ring of Air Control (even before increasing reputation to 20 to lower prices) for safety, trigger the Suna Seni and Renfield ambushes in a predictable way and to get the Ioun stone in the spider lair (for protection against criticals, +10% HP also helps). Once those were taken care of she could get to her next immediate priority: Ilbratha (for Mirror Image).

Even before leaving the promenade, Serena was able to sell of various things (Helm of Balduran and various bits and bobs from Irenicus' dungeon) to be able to afford the RoAC. She then left the promenade to go to the slums where she met Gaelan Bayle.

EDIT: Oh, yes, just a quick note: Serena was level 10 at this point.

Edited by AnonymousHero, 18 July 2011 - 10:31 AM.


#1950
Shadow_Leech07

Shadow_Leech07
  • Members
  • 553 posts

Alesia_BH wrote...

Quick Note on Alana's Game:

Alana is still alive. However, she is running out of steam. I've been kind of put off by the difficulty she has had with the Sahaugin Royal Guards and the first Drow party. SCS boosted them enough to make solo hit-and-run slinging a test of patience(*). I'm not sure I'll pass- not with everything else going on in my life at the moment.

In essence, Alana is on hold now. I may return to her when I have more time to play.


Best of luck to all the actives.

A.

(*) To be clear, I think SCS did an excellent job of balancing these components. Fighting these foes just happens to be wearisome for my character.


Sorry to hear that. Fighters tend to be repetitive throughout the game, employing the same strategy of buffing and then just hit and run.